Chapter 2: How to Conduct a
Standard 24-Session START Course

Section 2.A: Introduction

A Guideline Only

The chapter provides detailed instructions for one particular way to conduct a START course. Please use these as guidelines only, and continue to think creatively about your unique situation.

Before launching a new START course (or right at the beginning of the process), consider whether to modify the format, reorder the topics, and/or change the content to meet the needs of your group. Then throughout the process, be ready to alter the format and make other adjustments to address participants’ suggestions and to respond to changing circumstances.

One simple mechanism for change is built into the process via the evaluation at the end of each session, so it is possible to start with this model and then to experiment with changes as you go along. But if, at any point, the process is not meeting your members’ needs, you may want to conduct a special meeting to specifically address the course format or content and how the process can be revamped.

Taking Charge

Much of the value of the START course comes from the participants taking control of the process and learning how to make decisions together that best meet the needs of the group. Please support and encourage this process!

Next Section: 2.B. Preparing for a START Course